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Hot Stock Minute: Retail Sales, Dow’s 7th Heaven?

Dan Berman
Hot Stock Minute

An eke extends the streak. A rise of less than three points sent the Dow to another record high yesterday of 14,450.06 Likely to drive today's session: February retail sales which were up 1.1% beating estimates.

Corporate hack attacks will be the focus of a special meeting in the White House situation room today. President Obama will meet with corporate leaders to discuss cyber breaches, particularly from China. Just yesterday U-S intelligence officials drew new comparisons between cyber-attacks and terrorism saying the hacks threaten national security. Also yesterday it appeared that hackers posted financial and personal information about First Lady Michelle Obama online. Celebrities like Beyonce, Ashton Kutcher and Kim Kardashian may also have been targeted.

Call it drive-by looting. Google (GOOG) now admits grabbing people's personal information with the cars used in its Street View mapping project. Google is fessing-up to scooping-up things like computer passwords and emails in 38 states. The company will pay a $7 million fine and sponsor a public awareness campaign on wi-fi security. But the group Consumer Watchdog says that's "like asking the fox to teach the chickens how to ensure the security of their coop."


Express (EXPR) tops our list of stocks to watch this morning. The sotck has been down as much as 13-percent in premarket trading on the NYSE. Prior to today, the chain was recently on the upswing. But the company has just come out with quarterly earnings. It actually posted a 6% rise in net income, topping estimates. But the chain says it saw a decrease in store traffic during February.

Next, we look at Spectrum Pharmaceuticals (SPPI). Shares have been down more than 40% in premarket trading. This comes on news about its colorectal cancer treatment Fusilev. Spectrum originally forecast sales of more than $200 million for the year, but has now revised that to $80 or $90 million. The company blames the decrease on a shift toward generic drugs. With the exception of a spike last June, Spectrum shares had mostly remained between $11 and $13 until today.

Also down sharply at this hour is Velti Mobile (VELT), which is a mobile marketing company. Trading actually had to be halted for a little while. All of this comes as Velti reports that it swung to a loss in the most recent quarter. The company says it is making sales gains, but they're being outweighed by higher spending on things like research and development.

Game-maker Glu Mobile (GLUU) is making more gains today in premarket trading. The stock jumped nearly 17% during yesterday's regular session. The rise came after Glu launched its first project in which players can gamble with real money. The game features elements of Glu's popular Samurai vs. Zombies Defense. Right now it's available only in the U-K.